The Boston Celtics (35-15), the NBA’s top shooting defense, will challenge the Denver Nuggets (26-23) at Pepsi Center. Denver opened as a 1.5-point favorite, while the Over/Under (O/U) for the game has been set at 204 points. Action begins at 9 p.m. ET on Monday, January 29, 2018, and it can be seen on NBATV.
Boston Celtics at Denver Nuggets Odds Preview
The Celtics fell to the Golden State Warriors in their last game, 109-105. Boston’s Kyrie Irving had a solid performance, leading the team in scoring with 37 points on 13-for-18 shooting. Golden State did an excellent job of making free throws (23-26; 88.5 percent). Boston, meanwhile, had a better offensive rebounding percentage (25.0 vs. 22.7).
In the Nuggets last matchup, they beat the Dallas Mavericks, 91-89. Denver’s Nikola Jokic played an enormous role in the victory, registering 11 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists on his way to his first triple-double this year. Denver played a nearly perfect game. They had an offensive rebounding percentage of 20.5 (below their season average of 26.6) and a free throw rate of 0.136 (below their season average of 0.193). For those same stats, Dallas was 15.4 and 0.118, respectively.
The offense of Denver (12th in the league with an offensive efficiency of 107.3) will go head-to-head against the top-notch defense of Boston (first in the league with a defensive efficiency of 100.6). The Celtics figure to have the edge on that end of the court.
Of Boston’s 50 games, 26 have finished under the O/U total, while 30 of Denver’s 49 games have finished under the projected point total. The Celtics hold a sizable advantage in terms of straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records. They are 35-15 SU and 29-19-2 ATS, while the Nuggets are 26-23 SU and 21-25-3 ATS.
Marcus Morris has been superb over the last five games for Boston, averaging 13.2 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
These teams have already met once this season. In that game, the two teams combined to score 242 points, well over the projected point total of 208.5. The Celtics won 124-118, covering as 6-point favorites. The Celtics played a nearly flawless game. They had a phenomenal effective field goal percentage of 0.665 and a free throw rate of 0.241. The Nuggets put up marks of 0.544 and 0.209, respectively, for those same stats. Irving had a standout performance in the victory, putting up 33 points and seven assists.
Boston Celtics at Denver Nuggets Odds Prediction
Free Pick: SU Winner – Nuggets, ATS Winner – Nuggets, O/U – Under
- The Celtics rank 10th in points off turnovers allowed per game (15.4) while the Nuggets rank 29th (19.4).
- Boston ranks fifth in fast break points allowed per game (9.7) while Denver ranks 16th (11.9).
- Boston ranks third in assists allowed per game (20.0) while Denver ranks 22nd (23.9).
- Boston is 16-8 ATS on the road, while Denver is 13-11-1 ATS at home.
- The total has gone under in 13 of the Celtics 24 road games, while 16 of the Nuggets 25 home games have gone under.
- Denver is 13-2 when they allow under 100 points, while Boston is 24-2.
- The Celtics are 25-7 when they score more than 100 points, while the Nuggets are 20-14.
- The Nuggets rank third in second chance points per game (14.3) while the Celtics rank 20th (11.5).
- Denver ranks first in rebounds allowed per game (41.0) while Boston ranks 23rd (44.1).
- The Nuggets rank sixth in points in the paint per game (48.1) while the Celtics rank 27th (39.1).
- The Celtics rank sixth in three pointers attempted per game (31.7) while the Nuggets rank 13th in three pointers allowed per game (28.7).
- Boston ranks fourth in steals allowed per game (7.0) while Denver ranks 24th (8.5).
- Denver is 1-3-1 ATS with 4 unders and 1 over in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Boston is 2-3 ATS with 3 unders and 2 overs.
- The Nuggets average margin of victory in their last five games has been 0.8, up from 0.7 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Celtics have scored an average of 100.0 points per game (2.9 below their season average) and allowed an average of 102.2 points per game (3.7 above their season average).